HLMT Newsletter March 2021

The Helen Loewenstein Memorial Trust

The HLMT has a lot of positive news after a year during which the Covid pandemic has affected everyone and everything, and at a time when we are, hopefully, slowly emerging from its shadow.

1. First two HLMT-sponsored midwifery students have begun their course

We have really great news! The first two midwifery students sponsored by HLMT, Aminata Sumanie and Suah Vala, began their three-year studies in January 2021 at the Esther Bacon School of Nursing and Midwifery in Zorzor, north-east Liberia. They both met the HLMT criteria: they had the appropriate academic qualifications and they required sponsorship in order to enrol on the 3-year Diploma in Midwifery. Both students have indicated a desire to pursue their midwifery careers, once they qualify, in the rural areas where they grew up.

Aminata and Suah were selected at a very thorough entrance-exam-and-interview process in December. The interview panel included Esther Bacon teachers and Abdul-rahman Bah, a colleague of Helen Loewenstein in Liberia with a master’s degree in Public Health from Nottingham Trent University. Both Aminata, aged 29, and Suah, aged 19, impressed the interviewing panel with their high academic grades and passion to become midwives.
As a result of supporters’ donations, HLMT will pay their tuition fees, accommodation, initial equipment and fees for their professional registration exam. We will be receiving regular feedback on the progress being made by Aminata and Suah. The Helen Loewenstein Memorial Trust wishes them every success with their studies and careers.

2. HLMT Merchandise migrating to Ebay from Etsy

Since December, HLMT have been selling cards and crafts on Etsy. Thanks mostly to you, our supporters, over £1200 of merchandise has been sold, thus boosting HLMT grant-making funds. Etsy, however, takes almost 14% in charges, despite HLMT being a registered charity. So, over the next while, we will be moving over to Ebay, where their charity rates are only a third as much. A new range of cards and crafts will be on offer, together with all the existing favourites. For now, both sites will continue to operate. Please have a look at both sites to see what’s available.

3. Plant and Craft Stall Saturday 17th April 2021

As lockdown conditions ease, HLMT can again begin to run events on the ground. The first of these is a Spring Plant and Craft Stall on 17th April. Details are in the poster below. This event will mainly be of interest to supporters in and around Nottingham.

4. Looking for volunteer supporters – social media; supporting events; and fundraising

The Helen Loewenstein Memorial Trust wants to set up Facebook, Instagram and Twitter pages. If you might be able to help set up our presence on Facebook or Twitter , please contact us and let us know.
Also, as the year progresses we hope to be running or supporting more events where our stall will need to be set up. If you are willing to spend a couple of hours from time to time helping at the stall, again please contact us.
Supporters have organised their own fundraising events, such as walks, runs, coffee mornings and house concerts. It would be wonderful if you could set up a fundraising event, no matter how small. The HLMT can help with publicity, collecting donations and ideas about doing it. Please let us know if you might be interested.

5. Standing orders, donations and bequeaths in wills

HLMT plans are to increase the number of Liberian midwifery students we sponsor from year to year. The bedrock of our fundraising is the regular Standing Orders and one-off donations from supporters, for which we are so grateful. Whilst hoping that all of our supporters have long and happy lives, we would also be very grateful if you feel able to include HLMT in your will! Most immediately, if you are able to please set up a Standing Order, no matter how small or large, if you have not already done so.
Please return the form to us and not to your bank.
We depend on this regular income to do our work – in the last Covid-limited year, this has been crucial.

6. View/attend a HLMT Presentation at the Virtual International Day of the Midwife (VIDM) Conference on 5th May at 6 p.m.

The International Day of the Midwife is on 5th May. The VIDM committee has organised an online conference for that day. HLMT trustee Stella Nickolay, supported by trustee Pippa MacKeith for the Q&A, will be presenting a talk entitled, “Reducing maternal and child mortality in Liberia by supporting midwifery training.” Anybody is welcome to attend the conference. If you follow the blog on the website , much nearer to 5th May you will receive all the information about logging on. There is no registration – just click a link and you are there.

The HLMT wishes all our supporters good health and happier, more positive times ahead.

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